On a winter day in 2008, a hungry stray cat stumbled upon the Southwark Cathedral in London and never left. The kitty soon found her cozy little space right by a warm pipe beneath the chancel or on a cushion in the consistory court.

Doorkins Magnificat became such a vital part of the church’s community, capturing the hearts of clergy and visitors alike, making “the place softer and gentler and more accessible for the thousands,” according to Dean Andrew Nunn. She even met a Queen, or rather the Queen met her when the kitty fell asleep in her majesty’s favorite spot and remained there as her majesty arrived.

But unfortunately, on September 30, Doorkins Magnificat passed away. To commemorate the beloved feline, Southwark held a memorial service and laid Doorkins to rest in the churchyard. In a touching obituary, the Dean thanked God for “giving us such companions out of your good creation.” And the once-stray kitty will surely be missed by the hearts of many.

More info: SouthwarkCathedral.org.uk

(h/t: My Modern Met)

Doorkins Magnificat was once a stray cat who found a loving home at Southwark Cathedral on a cold winter day in 2008

Image credits: Bridget Davey

Doorkins Magnificat decided to settle at Southwark Cathedral twelve years ago after the Vergers would feed her each morning. The kitty was given her magnificent name and became a loved and loving resident inseparable from the church.

She always had her favorite spot to nap and in the cold winter months, Doorkins would stretch out on the radiator or snuggle into the hay during Advent.

Image credits: Bridget Davey

Image credits: Bridget Davey

Bored Panda reached out to Andrew Nunn, the Dean at Southwark Cathedral, who said that prior to Doorkins Magnificat, the personnel had talked about having a cat as the Cathedral was plagued by mice and rats.“

The Cathedral is located by the River Thames and is surrounded by the Borough Market with lots of delicious waste for vermin. But we had never got round to getting a cat and then Doorkins arrived, as a gift…”

The feline became a vital part of the church’s community, capturing the hearts of clergy and visitors alike

Image credits: Bridget Davey

Image credits: Bridget Davey

Image credits: Bridget Davey

Andrew Nunn explained that animals and creatures of all kinds play vital roles in the good creation. “What would we do without the pollinators? Where would we be without those carrion animals and birds that help clear up the environment? We all have a part to play and some animals have become friends and companions.”

As for Doorkins, she became “the focus of so much love and affection because we all need someone or something to love.” In fact, “Many people found they could love her,” the Dean said.

In 2017, Doorkins started having serious health problems and on September 30, the beautiful girl had a stroke and passed away

Image credits: Bridget Davey

Image credits: Bridget Davey

Image credits: Bridget Davey

It turns out that Doorkins was her own cat, and “we couldn’t control her behaviour. That meant that we had to relax.”

Doorkins would love to intervene, walk through services, and sit giving herself a good lick and clean in front of everyone at the most solemn moments.

“Being disruptive meant that we couldn’t stand on ceremony. Brits love ceremony, but sometimes we have to chill out and that is what Doorkins helped us to do.”

As a result, the community had to adapt to Doorkins’ unique way of being. “It meant that those who might be intimidated by formality found a way into sacred space,” Andrew Nunn recounted.

But the godsend Doorkins Magnificat will always be remembered with love by whoever had a chance to meet her

Image credits: doorkins_magnificat

Image credits: doorkins_magnificat

Image credits: doorkins_magnificat

In August 2017, the Cathedral published a book featuring Doorkins that followed a typical week in the life of their Magnificat. She was also featured on the church’s postcards and visitors would come to visit her every day. Read beautiful stories and see pictures submitted from people who remember Doorkins on this website dedicated to Magnificat’s memory.

Commenting on Doorkins’ passing, the Dean of Southwark, The Revd Andrew Nunn, said, “She met Her Majesty The Queen and was present at more services than most of us. She was photographed by thousands of people and had a book written about her. She has been a blessing to us in so many ways. We will miss her.”

Doorkins’ story of life and remembrance serves as beautiful proof of how much love a stray cat can bring to a church and its personnel, the community, and visitors.

The Cathedral held a memorial service for Doorkins Magnificat which was broadcast live and had 22,473 views

Image credits: Southwark Cathedral

And this is what people had to say about the beloved kitty